June 9, 2011

I like to keep my crazy confined to my own household whenever possible.

I made the mistake of reading a fan forum today.

At this point I don’t even know why I go there.

Curiosity, I guess.

You know – the kind that killed the cat.

I could tell you that I don’t care what people say about my husband (or even his team) but that would be a lie. And it would defeat the purpose of A Day in the Life of a Hockey Wife. This blog has never been about making this lifestyle seem glamorous, or garnering attention for doing nothing other than marrying a man who happens to play hockey for a living, or going on and on about things that just don’t matter. It’s about being raw and honest about this lifestyle and all that it entails; the good and the bad.

So the truth is, what people say does affect me. Sometimes, I’m ashamed to admit, it can even consume me.

While this wild journey of ours has its perks, I sacrifice a lot to support my husband and I can’t help but take certain things personally. We have felt beaten down more than once by the organizations themselves and that’s enough. We don’t need it from anyone else. I don’t need it from anyone else. Especially from people who don’t know what they’re talking about.

People who don’t know us. People who seem to forget that we’re human like anyone else.

I think at the end of the day, we’re all built that way; no one wants to be dragged through the mud. No one wants to hear the negative opinions that total strangers have of you. And if you ask me, it’s even worse when people are saying hurtful things about someone you love.

Which is maybe why I keep going back. Because the truth is – my husband doesn’t ever look at these forums. He either doesn’t care, or he’s smarter than me and knows just not to look. But if they were talking about me, I can almost guarantee he would be there. Feeling protective and fierce and… just as frustrated as I am whenever I read some of the things that are being said about him.

It’s different. Because they’re not talking about me. They’re talking about him. About the man I love. And sometimes… I just want to set them all straight.

You know that feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when your child tells you that someone was mean to them at school? The one where you just want to hug your baby and then swiftly drop kick the kid who hurt their feelings? It sounds kind of silly but that’s the feeling I get when I read negative (and often misinformed) posts about my husband … or anyone, for that matter.

Generally speaking, I think there are a handful of knowledgeable hockey fans running the show on these forums. Honestly, if a person uses words or phrases like ‘powerplay ’, ‘penalty kill’, or ‘system’ they stand out amongst the masses. The people who make misinformed or uneducated comments (unfortunately, the majority of fan forum participants) are generally the same people who bitch and moan incessantly and can find something wrong with any situation. You know, the glass is half-empty type.

The kind who will never be happy with how any player/team/coach performs. Not really anyway.

They are fans, simply because they want something to tear apart.

Last night my father-in-law sent me an e-mail with links (mostly articles that were written about my husband and his recent signing in Germany). The last link was to the team’s official fan forum. Ruh-roh. I figured there wouldn’t be much to read (or anything that would send me reeling) so I put the link into Google translate. Certain things were lost in translation but I got the gist of it.

The season hasn’t even started yet and these people were already assuming the worst of every player and even the coach.

Which is really so typical. I don’t know why I’m so surprised.

It wasn’t the thread dedicated entirely to my husband signing that sent me reeling though– his thread wasn’t that bad. It was more the general attitude of the ‘fans’ across the board. They don’t like this. They don’t like that. This isn’t right. And that sucks.

How can you be upset about something when you don’t even know what that something is yet? What’s the harm in giving things a chance? New coach. New talent. Why not be hopeful that these are good things?
I could take to the forums myself and set everyone straight (my father-in-law actually does a pretty good job of that himself) but what difference would it make? I’d just end up the hockey wife making headlines for being a raging lunatic. No thanks.

I like to keep my crazy confined to my own household whenever possible.

How these people feel though. The things they were saying. The way that they think. It’s all beyond me. I can’t do a damn thing about any of it, but still – it leaves me flustered and feeling protective and angry. People are always going to have something to say; sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s awful. That will never change and whether I like it or not (whether I signed up for it or not) it comes with the territory. But knowing that doesn’t make reading these things any easier.

The only thing I can do is stop reading the forums. Smarten up like that husband of mine.

Any takers on how long I’ll last?

16 comments:

  1. I am a fan who has occasionally used forums...and yes I'm sure I've occasionally been one of the bad ones.

    This is also why I mostly stay away from the forums though. It gives the idiots who can find a computer, and type...probably with 1 finger.. the ability to run their mouths. It drives me mad some of the stuff I see said about the Canucks, even on their own team website forum.

    I try to stick to my blog with my comments, its mostly about one player and you know...I've never honestly thought about what his wife might think if she saw it. Not that I sit there bashing him, I'm usually defending the crap out of him but can admit I have called him out for certain things.

    I can see why some players avoid things like Twitter, even with the good fans begging them to sign up. For every 1 good comment, there seems to be 2 or 3 asshats that feel the need to make bad uneducated ones. It would be impossible for them to just see the positive in all that, and see why the choose to ignore it all together. There is also one Canucks wife who is open about who she is on twitter, luckily for her, her husband is a highly, highly respected man.

    Keep your head up, ignore them, in a few months your husband will set them all straight the best way he knows how....playing the game.

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  2. Dear Wifey,

    You will keep looking at the forums, so stop lying.

    ...And I will be right there along with you. :)

    The boys don't look online because we do it for them (haha)...AND, because they honestly don't care. They know what type of players they are and what they are capable of producing.

    Keep reminding yourself: Does Mr. Joe Schmoe who sits behind his computer screen typing smack about someone he's never even seen play yet really matter? Is he offering contracts or scouting for a team? Has he even laced up skates or passed a puck in his life? Most likely, no.

    Whenever I read something to TJ I'm sure he listens and takes about .0001% of it to heart, but his response is always along the lines of him not caring, and he really doesn't.

    Growing up, the boys weren't checking fan forums to see what people thought of them. Instead, they were working hard every day to make sure they got to where they are today. The forums didn't matter then, and they sure as heck don't matter now.

    I've said it before to you throughout the different situations we've been through together these last few months - people can come after me, they can insult me, insult my blog, insult my writing, insult anything about me for all I care, but the second you insult or attack TJ I'm like a wild banshee. We are women. Call us crazy, but I call it nature; we are programed to be protective, and I'm glad you got that point across in this wonderful post. :)

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  3. I'm crazy like you. It never fails that every time I say I'm going to stop looking, I last about a week.

    Things that are sometimes said are hurtful to me, but I have to keep in mind that they don't get to see what I do. They watch the game and I watch the man after the game. It's me that has to see his anger, frustration, stress, and worry when he has a bad game. I'm the one who has to be the optimist when he's down and worried that one bad game could cost him his job. They don't hear what the coaches, teammates, and GM's say to the guys.

    That's a tough thing to keep in mind when I see someone ripping my fiance apart for something that wasn't at all his fault. Very few truly know and understand the game, and the ones that do tend to avoid the forums because they can see what idiots some of the others are and see no point trying to argue.

    I've also sometimes just wanted to get on and set the posters straight, but you're right. Not worth it. They won't listen, and I'll be the nutjob wife.

    There are fans on forums who know what they are talking about. I am generalizing with my "idiots" comment, but I know that's not everyone. I'm just like you and every other person out there.....I'm protective of those I love.

    At the same time, I can't help but smile my face off when a group compliments the crap out of my fiance. And of course the fans are NEVER wrong when they talk about how well he played. Double-edged sword. Rats.

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  4. hey it's krejcis_moxie ... firstly? do your best to avoid "forums." i don't ever read them BECAUSE of that crap. it gets SO frustrating to read the opinion of a bunch of misinformed idiots who think they're right all the time. i know of what you speak, believe me. and the only think you can really garner from those places is a hatred of humanity, and a desire to swear off the internet. i don't know why forums are the worst places on the internet, but they seem to be. if you must go back to them, take everything with a grain of salt, remind yourself those people don't know you OR hubby, and that they couldn't last a day in EITHER of your shoes. people on the internet talk crap because that's all they CAN do. it makes them feel better about their own pathetic lives. rise above :)

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  5. Another great post and thanks for updating us throughout the off season! In my mind, I see these schmucks commenting on hockey teams, players, etc as fat dorks, living in their mom's basement, calling sports talk radio shows, posting on fan forums and the like, because they have nothing better to do! Even worse, they've never put on a pair of skates, let alone hip checked a guy or put a slapshot just under the bar and lit the lamp.

    Stay the course and know that while there will always be haters out there, whining about stuff, there are fans too and while they aren't always as vocal, they are 100 times more important.

    Heck we see it here in Boston with the Bruins getting ripped after game 1 and 2 of the Stanley Cup Final and now after 3 and 4, they are setting up the cones for the parade...all premature and nonsense!!!

    Good things to you and the family and happy travels!

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  6. I come at it from a different perspective because I am just a staff member at an NHL arena...but it DOES resonate because our boys (& therefore the team offices) are IN the building so I get to see/hear experience a lot...plus do some Usher staffing for team stuff.

    People don't see what you see (& know) & as staffer I don't see it all either...but know enough that there are times I am DYING to set things straight but can't because of a no media rule for us or I know info that is not for public consumption. I know it doesn't touch your experience...but I do get it on a small level!

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  7. I've wanted to post a comment many times here, but it just never happened prior to this ...

    I appreciate how honest you are on this blog because alot of us fans can't relate and sometimes forget how human / "REAL" you (and your husband / family) really are. When I read alot of your posts, it helps me (and a few other fans too, I'm sure) realize that we're not all that different because we are concerned and worry (and rejoice and enjoy) alot of the same things.

    In the end, we're all human and we're going to make mistakes (on both sides -- you going to fan forums and me maybe not understanding or "respecting" the human / personal side to players and their lives, perhaps making something trivial) but the only way to be a better person is learning from those mistakes and trying to close the "gap."

    I applaud you for admitting things about yourself openly and I don't think that makes you "less smart" at all. I think it's very admirable and says alot about your intelligence (and emotional IQ) ... there's is something to be said about "the truth setting you free" too!

    KEEP YOUR HEAD UP ... all of us are human and most do not want to be mean or cause pain to others. Alot of what you read that you KNOW is wrong (or that they would change his / her mind if he / she only knew the WHOLE story) is only because they DON'T know the entire story OR they can't form an EDUCATED opinion.

    I hope that even though I blog about the "lighter side" of hockey that I also convey my knowledge of the sport as well (I'm currently writing a post on this very topic), but there's always that fine line and I'm just hoping that I come across being somewhere in the "middle."

    I'm sure you'll go back to the forum(s), but thats ok and allow yourself to do it without too much guilt because, after all, you're human and humans are creatures of habit and ARE curious. Just remember that after you vent, to make sure you learn something [positive] from the visit (then let it [the negative thoughts] go!)! ; )

    Keep up the great work ... I enjoy your blog and the perspective!! And CONGRATULATIONS on signing - YEA (I've been meaning to tell you that too!)!!

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  8. (@buySAMadrink)
    Hockey forums bother me, period.

    Like you mentioned in your post, barely ANYONE has an educated comment & if there is one; the others have no idea what they are talking about and go back to ranting about who was the "joke" of game. Everyone becomes an expert when things don't go the way they want with their team and 9 times out of 10; they are completely wrong. ALSO, you are lucky if they are even talking about GAME PLAY.

    I do believe there is a site that is fully dedicated to creeping on players' personal lives. It's disgusting to think people sit on those sites everyday all day and make outrageous accusations that are hardly even believable. YET people feed into it and before you know it; it's a becomes an internet whirlwind.

    I'm a hockey fan, and that is it. I know as much about the players as I see them on the ice, as the media tells me (which is never 100%) OR how awesome hockey wives (and future wives) like you and Kym invite us into your world through a blog.

    I don't see the need or obsession of wanting to know about players' personal lives. Like you said, they (you) are humans too; have family, friends and whether some fans like it or not another life outside of hockey.

    It's one thing being a fan and it's another being a creeper or just plain arrogant.

    Stay strong girl! YOU CAN DO IT!
    ps. Congratulations on the signing! WHOOP WHOOP! xox

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  9. oh jeez... rough stuff... i can imagine he feels much the same way luongo did when he was cheered off the ice by his Vancouver fans... so sad... hockey fans are very mean fans sometimes.

    I hope you don't read them anymore... people like that aren't worth the time it takes to read their B.S.

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  10. I will refrain from posting a multi-chapter novel on this (That's a lie), but I confess it is one of my hot buttons. First of all thank you for your blog. I really hope that these kind of people don't ever stop you from writing. You give us an insight we would never have otherwise and you are a great writer. You know how to spin a tale. I discovered one of our fan blogs this past season. I wanted nothing more than a place to talk hockey. I live in the south. We do have rabid fans but the likelihood of water cooler talk and just running into other fans in my daily life are not huge. There are some contributors on the blog that post really good info. But then there are the "fan" posts. There are certain people that just suck the life out of me. I read their comments and I can just feel my blood pressure rising. I get mad and email a friend who then talks me down off the ledge. He got so sick of it too that he wrote a post about it in the blog and now the community has a rule against "relentless negativity." Well it hasn't worked.

    This is something I posted on the fan blog. No real need to rewrite it. It shows you how disgusted I got and illustrates my point…

    "It’s the comments like how Cam Ward works 2 whole hours a night , is overpaid and he needs to “be man” and play. Or a shift goes out and something bad happens. Chad LaRose is sitting in the locker room getting his skates sharpened but there are a slew of comments on how whatever just happened is his fault. And it’s the people where I am thinking “WHY do you even watch this if you hate the players, coach, owner, gm so much?” Yes. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but when people are just miserable 24/7 it’s spreads like a cancer. Or it at least feels unpleasant. You know, like gas."

    I think at one point I mentioned how I was tired of hearing how Chad LaRose was the antichrist and possibly responsible for the earthquake in Japan.

    I try not to read it but I can't seem to look away. And if it was about someone I KNEW I would flip the hell out. And I figure the guys on the team really don't care and I am ridiculous. But it's my nature to be irritated by this stuff. My friend keeps reminding me that the internet brings out some of the worst in people. But there is a group of us out there that don't enjoy this kind of "discussion." Trying to say something against it has proven to be a waste of energy. Some of us have just moved to other things like Twitter. No I am not saying I never say anything negative. Hell you know I say things about Raffi Torres looking like he just ate a baby! ;-) But that is hopefully for laughs not for evil.

    I found a blog that has "Open letters to hockey fans." You might enjoy this post on "internet coaches." http://elsinoreallstars.blogspot.com/2010/12/open-letter-to-internet-coaches.html

    Short story long. Sorry! But yeah. I would look too. It would take all I had not to defend my husband if I was in your position. Just know these people are universally irritating. Just know you may not read positive stuff on the fan blogs because the non-assholes have defected because we want to kill the assholes and get sick of it too. (I promise I am not an asshole).

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  11. oh, the dreaded fan forum. Almost as good as the "girlfriend" site. That's part of why I LOVE being in Finland... none of that is an issue, and even if I knew about such sites, I (and even google translate) couldn't read them anyways. I'm blissfully ignorant... :)

    But, if we were over here... I'd be just as guilty of reading that crap. I think it's our wifely/maternal instincts to protect our loved ones. It is so frustrating to live a life in the "spotlight" where everyone picks you apart... but you're right, most all of those people have no idea what they are talking about. All we can do is shake our heads.

    Hopefully those fans will have a better attitude come the beginning of the season! :)

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  12. Aw man, they are just awful at times. We have already talked about this. And especially going through Google Translate, ouch, I can only imagine that things really are coming across worse that what they are. If you do keep up with checking in from time to time, it will be amazing how quickly their attitude changes when they see how great your husband can preform. I have no doubts that he will kick ass there!!! Really. And for your sake, eff them. You know he is great, he knows he is great, and that is all that matters. PS - really loved this post, so well done girl :)

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  13. As a girl who is CONSTANTLY looking at all the places she shouldn't... yeah, I'm no help to you at all.

    But I will totally bombard with the fan forums in your defense if you want! ;)

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  14. You want me to go in there and kick some ass? I'm famous for popping in on random forums and knocking them all to their knees.

    Don't do the forum thing myself anymore - I did when I first started learning about the sport, I wanted to know everything so I read everything! Of course the trolls are ridiculous on the forums so I don't bother with them anymore much.

    There's one forum - the people who own it are awesome and supported the Save The Coyotes efforts quite a bit - so from time to time I still visit there to check in with them.

    But if you want me to go in and present them with the facts I'll be happy to... LOL I'll say I'm his cousin or something. Then the conversation will go from Hubs to what a liar I am. Works every time... I got yer back yo! ;)

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  15. I know this post is long past and we have all moved on but I still thought I'd leave my say :)

    I cannot imagine having to read what these "fans" have to say about a loved one. I'm not in your situation but I do live in a city with very fickle fans. Once at a ballgame, the guy in front of me was yelling at the pitcher to retire, that he was awful and shouldn't be anywhere near a baseball; after striking out all 3 batters the guy was then yelling that he loved him and he was the man... I don't understand these fans and how their minds function (or not).

    I wanted to smack that guy and I'd never even met the pitcher he was talking about.

    I hope this gets better for you and that you enjoy your season in Europe!

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  16. Hi there from a german hockey "fan",
    even though this post is a few weeks old already, I felt like leaving a comment nontheless. The fan forums seem to attract a certain type of people for writing(!) there. The forum of my faviourite team in Germany is a sad/bad example for that. In most cases it does not stand in any way for the opinion of the majority of fans, the voice of reason is - as in most cases - also here: a quiet one :-(
    Also, (german) fans seem to LOVE to nag and brag about stuff and do, what we germans mastered for centuries: WORRY and expect at least the worst. If there are people being merry and happy about a new player in a forum, this post will attracts these "authors of doom" like moths are drawn to the light.
    It truly embarasses me, that a few of these grumpy morons give the impression as if they represent the fan base in german hockey (which I am positive, that this is not the case).
    Oops got carried away a bit, thanks for your highly entertaining and interesting blog btw,
    Greetings from Bavaria,Germany, with the best wishes for the new season!

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